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How to do Keyword Research for Better Rankings on YouTube

Why SEO and search are important for YouTube Success

To achieve YouTube success, you need to rank high in search and appear in recommendations. Hence, the need for YouTube keyword research. It involves knowing about YouTube, SEO specific to YouTube search, Google search engine, and Bing search engine.

The aim is to perform optimizations so that your YouTube videos rank highly in the YouTube app and on the search engine results pages (SERPs). When you properly do SEO for your video, the primary objective is for your video to rank the highest on YouTube. Therefore, you need to use keywords throughout the relevant sections of YouTube to optimize your video.

Then your YouTube video will also rank higher in Google search and Bing. You outperform your competition by targeting high search volume keywords and optimizing for the YouTube algorithm. For beginners, creators, and digital marketers, the optimization of your video presents a distinct advantage over others which rarely is optimized.

Places on YouTube to Optimize

Use keywords to optimize your YouTube videos and improve your rank on YouTube searches. To do this, use keywords strategically at various places. These are the video's title, description, tags, and within the video itself.

Let's take a closer look at each one

Include keywords in the video title and description of the YouTube video you post. Both YouTube and Google consider all parts of your video when determining its search ranking. However, make sure it reads organically. It can be off-putting to readers to see all this duplication if you are misappropriating your term only for the goal of search engine rankings. Before posting the video to YouTube, make sure it has a keyword in the video title and the thumbnail image.

Use keywords within the audio of the YouTube video. Speak the keywords during the recording of the video. So, you should include keywords in the script of your video if you use one so that any talk, dialog, or instruction contains keywords in the spoken words of the video. Make sure to upload the video's transcript to YouTube.

Following that, tagging your videos is now more vital than ever. YouTube recently debuted hashtag landing pages, which aggregate content to help visitors discover videos. When visitors click on a hashtag, they go to a page with videos related to that topic. Therefore, you must be very exact when selecting hashtags for your video. Choose a nice balance of popular and niche hashtags to improve your video SEO; for discovery on the correct hashtag pages.

YouTube Keyword Research and YouTube Hashtags

Choose a nice balance of prevalent and niche hashtags to help your video discovery on the correct hashtag pages. YouTube may reject your video if you breach the respective hashtag policies. Optimize hashtags to meet hashtag policies and ensure the usage of only the right keywords. Eliminate hashtag violations by doing the following at the research stage.

  • Don't over tag: If a video contains upwards of 15 hashtags, Google will ignore them entirely.
  • Don't mislead: Avoid misleading content by not using unrelated hashtags.
  • Don't abuse people: Avoid hashtags that abuse, humiliate, intimidate, expose, or menace a person or a group.
  • Don't incite evil: Avoid hashtags that incite violence or hatred toward people, groups, or organizations. Don't use hashtags that are racist, misogynistic, or otherwise derogatory.
  • Don't include sexual content: Including pornographic or profane hashtags in your video may prompt its removal. It's less probable that YouTube will accept a video meant to be sexually suggestive.
  • Don't use vulgar language: Your video may be restricted or removed for the use of profanity or inappropriate terms in your hashtags.
  • Don't use hashtags in your description. YouTube calls this tag stuffing and removes these videos from the site.

Brainstorm Keywords Based on Relevant Content

To make the most impact on YouTube keyword research is to emphasize keyword planning. Think about your target audience and research some data on them. Use social media to identify their specific needs and interests and understand what makes them tick.

You can read the comments on your competitor's videos and look at some commentators' YouTube pages to find out more about your target audience. Social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest are good places to find out what your audience wants.

Armed with this information, you will be in a position that allows you to know the keywords that appeal to your target audience. Once you know what type of content they desire, you can brainstorm a list of keywords that relate your content to their needs.

Perform Long-tail YouTube Keyword Research

Thinking about long-tail keywords and phrases is vital. Prioritize attracting specific demographics instead of large groups of people using long-tail keywords. They are highly particular and not general keyword terms and have lower competition. Find long-tail keywords using the following YouTube keyword research tools.

Use Google Autocomplete; or use YouTube Autocomplete

To discern the most popular search intent. Go to the Google search bar or the YouTube search bar, and type in a chosen search term when you've figured out your top keywords. You'll notice a list of related terms appear in the autocomplete feature, which you can use as keyword suggestions for your YouTube video.

Look at the videos that appear when you search for your topic and identify the ones most relevant to your audience. The most popular videos are usually those uploaded for the longest time. Use the Google search bar, or YouTube search bar, to look for videos that have recently emerged and have climbed to the top of the rankings.

View the Source of the Video

Look at the HTML video source to find additional video keywords.

  • On a Mac in Safari, press the following keys simultaneously: Option + Command + U.
  • On a Mac in Chrome: select View, click on Developer, then select View Source.
  • On a PC: right-click the web page and select View Source or View page source.
  • Press Ctrl+F on PC or Command+F on Mac to search for keywords and tags.
  • You may find out what keywords the YouTuber used on that video by searching for keywords in its source code. Look for keyword ideas that you may not have considered. When selecting what your keyword should be, look at a variety of videos and then see what they have in common. Don't just use the exact keywords as everyone else. You're curious about what makes a group of videos in a particular category rank higher.

  1. Find Keywords in your YouTube Analytics.

    You can also find keyword ideas in your YouTube analytics. Go to YouTube Studio and select Analytics. Click the Research tab to view the keywords and terms visitors use to discover your videos. You can then see your viewer's searches and searches across YouTube. Searching throughout your traffic sources will reveal keyword suggestions. These are the keywords visitors used to locate your videos in the past.

  2. Use Google Ads Keyword Planner and Google Trends.

    Search for words, search terms, or phrases related to your products or services. This keyword research tool will help you find the most relevant keywords for your YouTube channel. To find high search volume keywords, you can also use Google trends.

  3. Be even more specific.

    Take into account that your top keywords should be precise and have a low level of competition. As a result, you'll be able to improve the search for that keyword combination. For example, because "YouTube SEO" is such a broad term, change the long-tail term to "YouTube SEO recommendations," which is more targeted while still having a reasonable search volume.

  4. Use Third-party Keyword Research Tools and Services.

    To assist with keyword research, use third-party keyword research tools and services. These services work in your browser to evaluate search terms and YouTube videos to find the relevant and most popular keywords. Some of the best YouTube keyword tools and SEO Keyword Research tools include the following:

    • Ahrefs — This is a feature-rich SEO tool set with YouTube keyword tools. Use Ahrefs keyword explorer to find keywords. Type the search term or a list of keywords into Ahrefs to get specific search volume, interactions data worldwide, and five keyword concept summaries.
    • Chrome extensions — To perform keyword research using Chrome extensions, use vid IQ for YouTube and Tube Buddy.
    • The vid IQ Chrome extension allows you to find many keywords. Through the vid IQ menu called SEO tags, you can access the keyword research tab and obtain all the related terms and the metrics from a particular YouTube search.
    • To get started with Tube Buddy, launch the Keyword Explorer and type in a keyword. You can also look towards the bottom of the page to see what is trending. Tube Buddy detects different subjects instantaneously and lets you sort the findings by nation.
    • Keyword Keg — This allows you to search for keywords and related topics, import keywords, and combine words. You can use Keyword Keg to features on search engines to find many seed phrases at once, filter terms based on purpose, and populate suggested keywords.
    • SEMrush — Provides simple keyword research tools to assist you in improving traffic to your YouTube videos effectively and rank higher than the competition. SEMrush saves you time by allowing you to manage keywords, reference statistics, and more. The SEMrush Keyword Magic Tool has a library of over 20 billion keywords to help you choose the ideal ones for video content. SEMrush can help you locate long-tail keywords faster by building a comprehensive list of related keywords.

    To learn how to use third-party keyword research tools and services, try searching for tutorials on YouTube. You can practice using the recommendations using a free version.


Keywords are your allies used to optimize your videos to meet your YouTube channel goals. Thorough YouTube search engine optimization includes performing deep YouTube keyword research and placing the best keywords in your YouTube video assets. These places include the video title, video description, video transcription, video hashtags, the video's thumbnail, and even the naming of the video file.

Be strategic and considerate to drive conversions: If you use your keyword too often, readers will become annoyed, and YouTube may consider it spam.

Also Checkout
YouTube SEO Tips: 8 Simple Steps To Get Your Videos Listed Higher in Search

Give our free YouTube Optimization Tool a try - YouTube Optimization Tool